MBTA Changes Tune, Allows Carolers At Forest Hills Station

By Beth Germano, WBZ-TV

BOSTON (CBS) – It was almost a “bah humbug” moment for the MBTA when a group of Christmas carolers were turned away by Transit Police at the Forest Hills station this week.

Christmas carolers at Forest Hills MBTA station

Christmas carolers at Forest Hills MBTA station

The group from Hope Central Church in Jamaica Plain, located about a mile from the station, was told they would need a performing permit in order to sing. “All of us crawled here feeling so sad,” said church member Abbi Holt, referring to the tragic shootings in Newtown, Connecticut. “I’m a teacher and was just aching and hoping singing would give us a chance to cheer up and feel better.”

The new General Manager of the MBTA, Beverly Scott, defended the officers saying they were doing what they were trained to do in the interest of safety and security. “There is a process,” she says. “We can’t have everybody just showing up here.”

The group admitted they didn’t do their research on the need for the permit, but the MBTA made good on the mistake. Scott contacted church members and not only invited them back to sing to rush hour commuters, but joined in the singing herself. She also offered a free permit.

“I think we had an opportunity to come to a good resolution for everybody,” said Scott.

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